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4th January 2024  Content supplied by: GNT Group B.V.

Carrot Concentrate Allows Plant-based Meat to Change Color When Cooked

GNT has developed an innovative EXBERRY® carrot concentrate that allows clean-label red meat alternatives to change color during the cooking process.

The EXBERRY® Compound Red range allows plant-based products to imitate the color of raw meat before appearing to become rare, medium, or well-done when heated. The range can be used in combination with different EXBERRY® colors to create tailormade shades for meat substitute products, including burgers, sausages, minced meat, and meatballs.

EXBERRY® Compound Red is made from black carrots and vegetable oil and does not require E numbers under EU regulations. The innovation is the result of GNT’s investment in and collaboration with ETH Zurich spin-off company microPow, which developed a patented technology to encapsulate ingredients. The natural encapsulation solution melts when the temperature increases to release the black carrot concentrate.

Developing meat substitutes that match up to modern consumer expectations has previously proved a significant challenge for manufacturers. Research shows that replicating the appearance and behavior of animal protein is essential to maximize plant-based products’ appeal, particularly among those who also eat meat.[1] However, 69% of consumers worldwide also say it is important that meat substitutes are naturally formulated.[2]

With the launch of EXBERRY® Compound Red, it is now possible to create highly realistic red meat alternatives while supporting the clean and clear ingredient lists that shoppers demand.

Frederik Hoeck, Managing Director at GNT Group, said: “Today’s consumers want clean-label meat substitutes that look and behave just like animal products – and the EXBERRY® Compound Red range can provide the perfect solution. It allows products to mimic the appearance of animal protein both before and after cooking, opening up exciting new possibilities for the next generation of plant-based meat.”

Based on the principle of coloring food with food, EXBERRY® concentrates are made from edible fruit, vegetables, and plants using physical processes such as chopping and boiling.

Download information on EXBERRY® Compound Red here.


1. He, J. et al. ‘A review of research on plant‐based meat alternatives: Driving forces, history, manufacturing, and consumer attitudes’ Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety (2020)

2. FMCG Gurus ‘Meat & Plant-Based – Global Report’ (2022)



Date Published: 4th January 2024

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